A heart attack could be life-threatening, so any symptoms need to be checked out urgently. Board-certified cardiovascular expert Anthony Lewis, MD, FACC, of TLC Medical Group Inc in Port St. Lucie, Florida, offers the most up-to-date treatments for patients following a heart attack to prolong life and help you stay active. Call TLC Medical Group Inc today to schedule a consultation or book an appointment online.
If your heart doesn't have sufficient blood flow, it can't get enough oxygen. This causes the heart muscle to start dying and triggers a heart attack.
The most common cause of heart attacks is coronary artery disease (CAD). This condition affects the large arteries that provide your heart muscle with oxygen-rich blood. CAD develops because of a buildup of plaque inside the arteries that means they get narrower.
Plaque is a sticky material composed of cholesterol and other particles that circulate in your blood. It gradually accumulates on the artery walls and can cause angina (chest pain). In some cases, serious problems like a heart attack are the first clear sign of CAD.
In addition to having high cholesterol, other risk factors that increase your chances of having a heart attack include:
Other than your age and genes, these risk factors are all ones you can reduce by leading a healthier lifestyle.
The most striking symptom of a heart attack is severe chest pain. You may feel you have a heavy weight on your chest that's crushing or squeezing you. Heart attack pain often radiates out to your back, neck, and arms.
As well as chest pain, you might experience:
A woman’s experience of a heart attack may vary from a man’s. For example, the crushing feeling may be lower down rather than in their upper chest.
Without expert treatment, heart attacks can be fatal. It's vital not to ignore these symptoms but get immediate medical attention.
After a heart attack, one of the initial treatments is medication. You might need clot-busting drugs if there are any blood clots in your coronary arteries. Other medications you may need include drugs to regulate your heartbeat or widen your arteries.
You might need to undergo a procedure called revascularization using cardiac catheterization. This involves having a slim tube (catheter) inserted into an artery and up to your heart.
In one procedure (balloon angioplasty), your provider at TLC Medical Group Inc inflates a tiny balloon inside the artery to flatten the plaque. They may also insert a mesh tube called a stent to keep the artery open. In another procedure (atherectomy), they remove the plaque.
Other possibilities include installing a pacemaker or undergoing heart bypass surgery.
For outstanding post-heart attack care, call TLC Medical Group Inc today or book an appointment online.